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Pearls OK any anytime you desire

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I have been told that one must never wear pearls after 5 p.m. I have a lovely string of pearls that I’d love to wear for an evening out. Is that really incorrect?

GENTLE READER: Oh, those poor innocent pearls, grounded when the fun starts, while their flashier sisters, the major gemstones, are out whooping it up.

Miss Manners is pleased to tell you that you have been seriously misinformed. Pearls can always be trusted to be proper, so they are allowed out at any time of day or night.

It is diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds that have time restrictions. They should not show themselves in daylight, unless they are respectably set in engagement or wedding rings. But then, they probably don’t care, because they are nursing hangovers from the nightly revels.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My partner, Jonathan, often goes by the nickname Jon. When I introduce him as such, people presume he’s a John, and when they hear his last name, they tease him for being named after a particular English explorer, and question the nature of his relationship with Pocahontas.

How do we introduce him such that we encourage people to use his nickname but ensure that no lame jokes follow?

GENTLE READER: If you discover a way of preventing people from joking about other people’s names, please let Miss Manners know. All jokes about people’s names are lame, and you may be sure the targets have heard them countless times before.

In this particular case, possible protection might be achieved by using your partner’s full given name when introducing him to strangers. Maybe not; those jokers are relentless. Just tell him not to smile when he says, “Pocahontas? Never heard of her.”

Please send your questions to Miss Manners at her website,; to her email,; or through postal mail to Miss Manners, Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.


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